Author: Lisa McMann
Release Date: February 7, 2012
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Most appropriate for ages: 14+
How I got it: Received for review through Around The World Tours
Ethan was abducted from his front yard when he was just seven years old. Now, at sixteen, he has returned to his family. It's a miracle... at first. Then the tensions start to build. His reintroduction to his old life isn't going smoothly, and his family is tearing apart all over again. If only Ethan could remember something, anything, about his life before, he'd be able to put the pieces back together. But there's something that's keeping his memory blocked. Something unspeakable...McMann's books are like chocolate in that I love chocolate and I love her books. (I suck at metaphors, ok.) Her most recent novel, The Unwanteds, was my least favorite of hers so far, but she really pulled it out with Dead To You.
Ethan's voice is so sad and authentically male that you can't help but want to hug him...but not too tight cause you know that guy would think about the way your boobs feel against him as you hug him, and that would just be tres awkward. Honestly, though, I really loved his character and sympathized with him. I also loved the way McMann built relationships between Ethan and others, like Gracie (oh man, that little girl was too freaking cute), Cami, and the rest of his newfound family.
But Dead To You was not perfect.
My main complaint would be THAT IS NOT AN ENDING. I am all for standalone books but not in this case because IT DID NOT END. IT JUST SAID THE WORDS THAT MCMANN KNEW WOULD RIP MY HEART OUT. It just ended really quickly and abruptly. And I saw the ending coming a little and I think it did help the book pack an even bigger emotional punch but I didn't want it to happen but I CAN'T EVEN. AND YOU'RE TELLING ME THIS IS A STANDALONE?
*composes self* Anyways.
I liked this book enough that I was willing to overlook my big problem with it and I know that I'll still shove it into the hands of my friends and family and tell them, "IT WILL TEAR YOU APART AND IT'S AWESOME."
McMann has again proved herself to me. She always manages to write fast, dark books that leave a lasting impression on you. I admire her skill and can't wait to see what she does next.
...But seriously where's my sequel?
Plot: Fast yet dark and unique.
Characters: Ethan was just...perfect. I even liked that little turd Blake.
Writing: I feel like it wasn't particularly remarkable, but I enjoyed the storytelling and Ethan's voice.
Ending? See the above gif.
Kid friendly? There (obviously) was talk of child abduction. There was also swearing, and some just overall dark subject matter, especially in those last two pages.